The Progress Fund

$2.75 Million Awardee

For more than 60 years, the economy of southwestern Pennsylvania has struggled. “We lost our basic industry—steel and the businesses it supported,” says David Kahley, the President and CEO of The Progress Fund. “Since the end of World War II, it’s been more bust than boom. Even in good times, we don’t catch up.” The Progress Fund was established in 1997 to help put an end to the bust. The organization works to create economic opportunity throughout a 39-county region that includes western Maryland, West Virginia, and eastern Ohio, as well as southwestern and northern Pennsylvania. And while its basic strategy—providing loans and technical assistance to underserved entrepreneurs—is typical of many CDFIs, its highly focused approach to lending is not. 

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